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European Commission clears Malta of discrimination claims on public transport

Ggovernment working on the transposition of EU rules to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communication networks.

Staff Reporter
11 February 2016, 10:35am
The new bus system charges discriminatory prices for residents and non-residents
The European Commission has cleared Malta of a claim that it might be discriminating against against non-Maltese residents in the use of the public transport system and breaching the principles of the Single Market.

The claim had been the subject of a question made by MEP Daniel Dalton (ECR) on behalf of a constituent on 28 October 2015.

Commissioner Violeta Bulc said that the Maltese authorities have ensured that the personalised smart card is accessible to anyone irrespective of nationality or place of residence. It can be obtained with a non-Maltese identity document and the card is delivered to postal addresses outside Malta, provided that the applicant pays the relevant postal costs.

Meanwhile, the Commission also said told MEP Therese Comodini Cachia (PPE) that the Maltese government is working on the transposition of the Directive on measures to reduce the cost of deploying high-speed electronic communication networks.

In a question on 12 November 2015 the Maltese MEP had asked the Commission about Malta’s preparedness to implement the Directive.  She also asked whether the Commission was satisfied with the progress made in Malta with a view to ensuring that by 2020 all of its citizens have access to much higher Internet speeds (above 30 Mbps), and that more than half of its households subscribe to Internet connections with a speed above 100 Mbps.

Commissioner Gunther Oettinger on behalf of the Commission replied that the Malta Communications Authority and Transport Malta were advising the government on its transposition. A widespread consultation with various government entities is being carried out and a public consultation closed on 6 November 2015.

The Maltese government is proposing amendments to the Utilities and Services (Regulation of Certain Works) Act and to other laws such as  the Electronic Communications (Regulation) Act and new regulations under the Building Regulation Act.
Oettinger said that Malta has completed its broadband coverage and all connections are at least 30 Mbps. The take up of fixed broadband is well above EU average. By the end of 2014 most consumers had migrated to fast broadband services.

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